Press-Republican

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April 29, 2013

Avoid fake Boston bombing charities

(Continued)

▶ Be careful when giving through social media. As with other recent tragedies, social media sites are being used to raise money for victims of the bombings. Before giving through these sites, check out who is behind the fundraising efforts and ask the same questions you would of a charity.

▶ Before you text a contribution, check the charity’s website or call it to confirm it has authorized contributions to be made via text message. Keep in mind that donations via text messaging may not reach the charity until after your phone bill is paid. It may be faster to contribute directly to the charity.

▶ Don’t give cash. Give directly to the charity either by a check made payable to the organization or through the charity’s website.

▶ Be careful about personal information. Avoid giving credit card or personal information over the phone or by text message. In all cases, make sure you are familiar with the organization to which you give such information and check to see that the fundraising campaign is legitimate.

▶ Avoid unsolicited spam emails. These formats are usually not associated with legitimate charities. 

▶ Report suspicious organizations. If you believe an organization is misrepresenting its work or that a scam is taking place, contact the attorney general’s Charities Bureau atcharities.complaints@ag.ny.gov.

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